Friday, September 11, 2015

Confession: I have a drinking problem...

I'm apologize if this comes as a shock to you, as I am sure none of you had expected this from me. My husband only recently found out about this, in fact. I've been struggling for a while and decided I really need to do something to overcome my problem. I was not doing well last month and put off writing last month's blog post because I am ashamed, as if putting it off somehow helps me to go on with my life, pretending this is not affecting me as much as it does. Believe me, this is really hard for me to admit. The first step in healing is admitting we have a problem, right? Thank you for being allowing me to be "heard."

My drinking problem has caused me to feel tired, achey, depressed, and downright old!  Some days, I don't like what I see looking back at me in the mirror.  I used to be able to carry out my way of living with seemingly no negative symptoms, until the past few years. It just seems to be getting worse and worse, with new ailments popping up as time goes on. I'm supposed to be practicing good health, as I preach everyday to all of you. I have been a hypocrite. I need to come clean about this problem and stop the madness once and for all.

My drinking problem... is that I don't drink ENOUGH water. There. I said it. Whew! I feel better already! Seriously. I never realized how HUGE of a problem this has been for me for many years and how many of my aches, pains, and body issues are linked to too little water in my system. I'm lucky if I drink 32 oz of water in a day. As a Physical Therapist, I see many clients during a work day, and often don't want to take the time to take a break between clients to use the restroom. Several years ago, when I was working for a PT clinic and saw a new client every 30 minutes, I would finish working 8-10 hours, and realize at the end of the day that I had not had ANYTHING to drink all day long!! My big problem is that I much prefer coffee and red wine (in moderation, of course) over plain water. I've tried putting fresh squeezed juice into my water. Didn't help. Tried some Essential Oils. Slightly helpful, but still having a problem. I even bought a water bottle that had numbers and a dial on it to keep track of how many times I filled it up during the day. Didn't work. I figured, I must not be the only one who has this problem.

I started taking a poll at my office, and have been asking my clients how much water they are drinking on any given day. I was talking with one client, Jacki, and she agreed that she too has a "drinking problem." I felt a little better about myself, knowing I wasn't the only one, but then I began to wonder "How many others of you out there also have a drinking problem?"

Did you know that our muscles don't work as well when we are not properly hydrated? And that our joints rely on proper hydration levels to keep them well-lubricated? Pretty much EVERY body organ and system slows down when hydration levels are not optimal. Not drinking enough water can lead to thicker blood and elevated blood pressure, higher cholesterol, obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, Cancer, Asthma and allergies, skin problems, kidney stone development, constipation, digestive disorders, joint and muscle pain and fatigue. Any of these sound familiar? Maybe you have a drinking problem too!

An article on reports the amount of water we need in a day "depends on your size and weight, and also on your activity level and where you live. In general, you should try to drink between half an ounce and an ounce of water for each pound you weigh, every day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, that would be 75 to 150 ounces of water a day. If you’re living in a hot climate and exercising a lot, you’d be on the higher end of that range; if you’re in a cooler climate and mostly sedentary, you’d need less."

For the past month or so, I truly have made a conscious effort to drink more water at home before I leave in the morning, while I am at work, and once I get home. I do feel a difference already. I know I may have "good days" and "not-so-good days" but I am CERTAIN that I cannot have a relapse with my drinking problem! My muscles and my health are depending on me to overcome this problem. Thanks for your support!